Gospel: Mark 16:15-20
Jesus said to his disciples:
“Go into the whole world
and proclaim the gospel to every creature.
Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved;
whoever does not believe will be condemned.
These signs will accompany those who believe:
in my name they will drive out demons,
they will speak new languages.
They will pick up serpents with their hands,
and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them.
They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
So then, the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them,
was taken up into heaven
and took his seat at the right hand of God.
But they went forth and preached everywhere,
while the Lord worked with them
and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.
The Gospel of the Lord.
The Mass intention is for Kevin Doyle RIP.
Forty days after His Resurrection, Jesus ascends to heaven. One might wonder what “right hand of God” means. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), “By ‘the Father’s right hand’ we understand the glory and honor of divinity, where he who exists as Son of God before all ages, indeed as God, of one being with the Father, is seated bodily after he became incarnate and his flesh was glorified” (663). Christ has been glorified after faithfully carrying out the Father’s will on earth.
Jesus’ Ascension is not the end of the story though. Jesus’ sitting at the right hand of the Father does not mean He has left the Church on its own devices. Today’s Gospel is clear about that: “But they (the apostles) went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.” The Church has continued to thrive because “Jesus Christ, having entered the sanctuary of heaven once and for all, intercedes constantly for us as the mediator who assures us of the permanent outpouring of the Holy Spirit.” (CCC 667). Today’s feast gives us hope that Christ walks with us in our journey and that we will share in His glory one day.
- How does Jesus’ Ascension inspire you to be a messenger of hope?
- What does Jesus’ Ascension mean to you whenever you hear of or experience the death of a loved one this pandemic?
- “He is there, awaiting us, and by His Holy Spirit, He is here accompanying us.” (Thomas Howard). How do you look forward to being reunited with Jesus in His Kingdom?
Lord Jesus, thank You for Your Word today. Fill us with hope that we may faithfully go into the whole world proclaiming Your Gospel to all. Welcome into Your Kingdom our departed loved ones, especially those who passed away during this pandemic. Make us worthy to be reunited with them, with all the saints, and with You in the future. Amen.